Georg Friedrich Händel
The Flemish Radio Choir and baroque orchestra Il Gardellino bring this virtuoso and Italian-themed concerto at St. Michael’s Church, Leuven’s most beautiful baroque church.
In the autumn of 1706, a young Handel travelled from Hamburg to Italy, the mecca of music in the early 18th century. It would prove to be a very fruitful musical study trip along vibrant and inspiring cities such as Florence, Venice and Rome. He came into contact with well-known composers such as Arcangelo Corelli and father and son Scarlatti, and was initiated into the secrets of Italian baroque music.
In 1707, Handel arrived in Rome, where he made a big impression with a series of vespers for soloists, chorus and orchestra, including Dixit Dominus and Laudate pueri Dominum. The youthful and colourful fervour he displays particularly in Dixit Dominus carries the audience away in a spiral of drama alternating with beautiful contemplative moments.
It was long believed that the cantata Il pianto di Maria had also been composed by Handel, until it was recently discovered that they were in fact by Giovanni Battista Ferrandini. This Italian composer was active in southern Germany for a long time and afterwards enjoyed his retirement in Padua. In this cantata from 1739 for mezzo-soprano and strings, the Virgin Mary weeps for her Son at His grave, in an exuberant baroque style.
with Deborah Cachet (soprano), Rachel Redmond (soprano) and Sophie Rennert (mezzo soprano) conductor Bart Van Reyn photo Wouter Van Vaerenbergh